Saturday, June 13, 2020

The Criteria of Starting Points


Reasons are provided by the information we begin with, along with the rules that establish the connection between that information and the statement that is believed.

But on what basis do we select the information we begin with?

And how do we decide on the rules?

There wouldn't be any point in claiming some conclusion was rationally inferred if we got there on the basis of a perfect algorithm using randomly-chosen premises, or on the basis of appropriate premises in strict accordance with a ridiculous algorithm or set of rules.

As Kuhn said, The practicing scientist within normal science is someone who mindlessly, endlessly, and almost feverishly twists a Rubik's Cube to try and solve the puzzle without ever asking why one is trying to solve that puzzle instead of some other puzzle.

--Redacted from James F. Harris, Against Relativism, pages 81-82.


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